Eleven (11) released and two local Ghanaian cassava cultivars were fingerprinted to estimate the genetic diversity among them using 35 SSR markers. Genomic DNA of thirteen cassava cultivars (UCC, IFAD, Agelifiaa, Nyerikobga, Nkabom, Essam Bankye, Akosua Tumtum, Debor, Filindiakong, Afisiafi, Doku Duade, Bankye Hemaa and Bankye Botan) were isolated and used as template for PCR amplification involving 35 SSR markers. The recorded gel bands (163 polymorphic bands) were subjected to NTSYSpc Version 2.1 software for cluster analysis and development of dendrogram to show the corresponding similarity coefficients. Genetic relationships between Bankye Hemaa and Filindiakoh and that betweenBankye Hemaa and Afisiafi recorded 1.2% similarity coefficients respectively. The local cultivars, Debor and Akosua Tumtum were distantly related at 52.31% similarity. Filindiakoh was found to be the closest relative to Akosua Tumtum andDebor at 17.9 and 29.1% similarity, respectively. Bankye Botan and Bankye Hemaa, however, were distantly related to most of the cultivars, including the local varieties. Bankye Hemaa was found to be closest relative of Filindiakoh and Afisiafi(1.2 and 1.1% similarity, respectively) and suggesting that they could serve as very good candidates in breeding programs in Ghana. Bankye Botan and Bankye Hemaa are distant relatives to most of the cultivars, including the local varieties which could however make these cultivars also very useful in breeding.
Key words: Maninhot esculenta, cassava, molecular diversity, fingerprint, selection of genotype, DNA, SSR markers.
PAGE, Polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis; EDTA, ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid; PVP, polyvinyl pyrrolidone; PCR, polymerase chain reaction; RAPD, random amplified polymorphism DNA; AFLP, amplified fragment length polymorphism; RFLP, restriction fragment length polymorphism; SSR,simple sequence repeat.
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